Saturday, September 26, 2009

Eat chocolate

On her last visit, before her return, my sister's mother-in-law brought us a box of Lindt chocolate. For about two weeks afterward, I craved chocolate; I wondered about the joys of being a chocolatier. I even stopped by a chocolate factory. Chocolate seemed to be a substitute for the sudden absence of excitement... At times, I worried about my skin breaking up. After all the last report by an Australian team seems to suggest that there was a link between diet and acne.

Not to worry! A recent study by a Norwegian group of scientists explored a possible influence of dietary factors, including chocolate, on the relation between acne and mental distress. The study was done on 18-19 year old adolescents living in Oslo, Norway. The methodology included self-report, questionnaire, and Hopkins Symptom Checklist 10. The study concluded that, although acne seemed to be associated with mental distress and, among girls, with infrequent consumption of raw vegetables, dietary factors, including consumption of chocolate, do not alter the relationship between acne and mental distress.

Go ahead! Eat chocolate!

Photo: Lindt

Monday, September 7, 2009

Let there be Love and Gratitude!

It has been over a couple of weeks since my dear sister's wedding. I am slowly recovering from all the excitement, dance and food. My sister was a very beautiful bride. Yours truly was the maid of honor and did her best to match the beauty that surrounded her. The bridal party was glamorous. The occasion was made very special by many of our childhood friends, whom we had not seen in over a decade and half, who traveled from different parts of the world to be part of the celebration... Love was all around... My dear sister and her groom's Thank you note, which they included in the wedding program, expressed it well:
We would like to thank our extraordinary parents, our wonderful siblings, and our supportive friends and family members who came from near and far. We feel embraced by your love, humbled by your presence and grateful for our blessings. Each of you has directly or indirectly played pivotal roles in our lives...


... and ...

One of the touching moments of the day was when my paternal uncle, who was subtituting for our father, and my sister went back to their seats in tears after the father-daughter dance for which my sister had chosen "Dance with my father" by Luther Vandross. As I watched my aging uncle sobbing and my mother wiping her tears, I wondered who will manage to be present at my wedding... As I looked over my paternal family members, I imagined how proud my father would have been... For a few seconds, my mind had wandered to the future and then to the past. When my mind returned to the present, the ballroom felt suddenly warmer and fuller. I felt very happy for my dear sister who was blessed to find that special someone in time to share him with the remaining family. The day could not have been more perfect!

Photo: David's Bridal